Tag Archives: family

The Traveling Smallfrys™

By Maricris of Zensible Mama


Traveling is probably my family’s best skill, if it’s a skill at all. We can pack a mean luggage at any given time and just go! Frequent traveling will do that to you. It also sharpens your ability to pack right and to bring only what is sensible and easy to carry.  The key is to travel light but not deprived.

This holds true when you’re traveling with your child(ren) like we do. And with children come toys! Not just toys but their favorite toys. And oh boy! Some of them can be big. Fortunately, my daughter prefers to bring her Build-A-Bear animals when she travels, which sometimes double as her “travel pillow”. The only problem with it, is that sometimes because they’re large, she can’t really hold on to them well when she’s dragging her own luggage and there have been instances where she drops them or the worst, almost lost some of them in one of our plane trips.

Thank goodness though, and I do mean real goodness, for Build-A-Bear Workshops’ cute and adorable smallfrys™. They’re small, yet not lacking in the cute factor and travel really well. I can easily stuff them in my shoulder or carry-on bags and they’re great for small hands to hold on to when we’re on the go, on the road, or trying to catch our next plane!

In our recent travel to the beach, we opted to bring only our army, yes army, of smallfrys with us. All four of them, including Pedro, my very own little monkey doo. The great thing about having just them in this trip was that my daughter can easily stuff them in our beach bag and transport them on to the beach. And because they’re small, they’re easily manageable, they don’t take up that much space and it was relatively safe from getting too much sand in the process!

Though my favorite thing was that because the smallfrys are small enough, they fit perfectly in either my hubby’s pocket or my daughter’s to keep them safe when her little hands are busy checking out souvenir items at the shops at the beach.

But I think the best thing about the smallfrys is that we were able to bring all our favorite animal collections but in its smaller versions, creating less hassle because we didn’t have to pack a bulky bag to accommodate them. They’re perfectly-sized and my daughter was happy to have them and was surrounded by them each night while she slept! Now that is what you call perfect complement to a wonderful vacation!

Personal note:

Now, it’s needless to say, that during this trip we detoured, like we always do at every place we go to, at a Build-A-Bear Workshop store in Myrtle Beach and my daughter ended up going home with a store-exclusive animal, the Stingray, as part of her excellent academic achievement rewards and eyed the Lime Leopard smallfrys that she might just get soon enough to add to our growing collections.

And I tell you, the new smallfrys collections are all so adorable, it’s so hard not to get your hands on one of them if not all. They’re great “mini-me” version of your favorite regular-sized Build-A-Bear animals, just ask my daughter…


Teaching Your Kids to be Patriotic

By Brandy Walleshauser of No Time Mommy


I met my husband a few weeks before he left for basic training. It was one of the toughest decisions he ever made, but after 2001 he felt like he had to defend his country. We welcomed our first daughter while he was still in the Army and he deployed to Iraq a second time two weeks after she was born. Just three short months later, we lost some incredible friends by an IED. It was at that point that we decided it was important for our kids to know the true meaning of Memorial Day and Independence Day, letting them know what it means to be patriotic. After all, for most people it is a day of fun and barbecues, but to us it’s so much more.

I think it’s hard for my kids to really understand the true meaning of being patriotic because they are so young, but we have taught them a few simple things.

Flying the flag: The American flag is a big part of being Patriotic, and while we can’t fly one where we live we make sure our kids know what it means and the proper etiquette when holding or hanging a flag. We do have a flag across from us along with a POW/MIA flag in honor of those missing. The kids love looking at it.

Showing your spirit: You can buy a child’s flag shirt for just $5, it’s the perfect way for your child to show off their spirit.

Read a book about our country: My daughter came home one day from school and was teaching me about patriotism and our founding fathers, etc. It was really amazing how much she knew, all from a children’s book.

Showing self respect: This could be the most important thing to teach your children. For a child to learn what it really means to be patriotic they need to show respect to our culture and country. We would not have freedom without responsibility. Teaching your kids not to liter or damage their surroundings is a great way to show respect for themselves and the world around them.

There is also the option of taking them to a concert or a fireworks show, to show your child how patriotic others are.

My son decided that he wanted to show you his spirit by getting a star style teddy from Build A Bear Workshop and dress it up as a soldier.


Recycled Birdhouse

By Angela Roy of Mommy PR


This birdhouse was my husband’s idea. That man is a Martha Stewart sometimes. I had a box from The Honest Company, it was sort of long and skinny, on the smaller side. He took one look and decided that was going in the backyard for the birds.

What you will need:

  • A box
  • 2 kabob sticks
  • Popsicle sticks (optional)
  • Any craft extras for design (we used some pine and pine cone)
  • Glue Gun

Your total cost should be FREE.

Step 1:

Take a the box and make it into a small square. We did this by cutting the long box in half and combining the 2 sides together (one half inside the other) to make it shorter. Simply glue those 2 together.

Step 2:

Take part of the lid, fold it in half for a roof. Run a Kabob stick through the bottom of the roof, through the birdhouse to the other side. This will help secure it stays on, but as an extra caution glue it also. It should look like the letter A now. Leave the ends of the Kabobs like they are, the birds can use those to perch on, or cover them in Popsicle sticks like we did (optional).

Step 3:

This part is all optional. You can use the Popsicle sticks to line the birdhouse for decoration, or add pine cones, leaves, flowers, even glitter. Whatever you want. Then just find a place to hang it outside.

Now isn’t that the cutest recycled birdhouse?

Have a whirl at it and see what you come up with.


How to Build a Nut House

By Angela Roy of Mommy PR

I bet you never thought you would be reading how to build a nut house. With kids, it’s always something, right?

We have been feeding our backyard squirrels for a while now. It’s something that I remember doing with my late grandpa. He would be swarmed by the local wildlife just eating out of his hands. I would just sit in amazement as they acted like house pets to his every move. Ahh, the memories.

Anyway, I wanted my girls to build some “Nut Boxes”, just little containers to hold squirrel feed; nuts, corn, sunflower seeds, etc. (You can also make these boxes to hold trinkets, craft supplies, jewelry, or candy. They are very versatile.) I made this affordable for anyone, because all the items are from The Dollar Tree (you know, the place where everything under the sun is only $1).

You will need:

  • Popsicle Sticks- I bought 2 bags of 100 sticks ($2)
  • Glue- ($1)
  • Peanuts- ($1)
  • Leaves, Pine Cones- Free, just let the kids pick items from outside
  • Bird Topper- Optional ($1 for pack of 2)

Your total cost should only be $5

Step 1:

Lay two sticks down, about the length of the Popsicle sticks apart from each other, and glue 10 sticks across them to build a base.

Step 2:

Glue one stick along each side slightly overlapping each end atop the end of another stick. Continue until you reach the depth you want for your container.

Step 3:

While your box is drying, make another “base” as in Step 1. This will be your top. Let the kids really use their imagination on this part. Pine cones, birds, rocks, etc. Whatever you want as your top.

Step 4:

Allow to dry and then fill with your favorite foods for the animals or your other furry friends. This can be dog treats for Fido, nuts for the squirrels, or even candy for Grandpa.

An extra you can do; If you get the plain Popsicle sticks, you can let the kids paint something on the sides. Also, we are leery of leaving a full box outside. We learned that the birds and squirrels sure are stronger and more nosy than we thought. They ate both boxes and dumped them on the ground! (see photo below) We keep joking that soon we are going to see them so fat they will be dragging their bellies across the grass.

I hope you enjoy your craft time with the kids! What will your nut houses look like? Leave us a link to see them!


Homesick kids at summer camp

Megan Dunham of Half-Pint House

My husband and I met while working at a youth camp in Colorado. That year was my first. I was 19 and I spent it working in the camp kitchen. It was my husband’s third and he had just joined the camp staff in a full-time capacity. Fast forward three years and we were married and both involved as full-time camp staff. Between the two of us we experienced camp life in just about every capacity you can imagine – from kitchen crew to counselor to store manager to resident camp director we pretty much did everything there is to do at camp at some point during the 10 years we worked there.

One big thing we dealt with on a semi-regular basis was homesickness in our youngest campers. The camp we worked with started off with 2nd graders and went all the way up through high school. The camp we worked at was an overnight camp that lasted a full week. Kids were dropped off on Sunday afternoons and picked up again on Friday mornings.

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Meet Brandon , Father of 6

Brandon has been a bear for nearly 13 years, and he is also a father to 6 boys ranging in age from 5 – 17 years old! His kids help him keep Build-A-Bear Workshop the MOST fun place! When Brandon came to World Bearquarters, he worked on getting new stores up and running. He was an important part of the IT team and eventually began working more with our online and interactive projects, like Bearville.com™. You better believe his boys have helped him test games to make sure we offer pawsome stuff for kids of all ages!

Brandon Elliott's family

Brandon’s crew has also helped test the Build-A-Bear App. With a Dad in IT, his kids love all things techie. He became a bear when his oldest son was just 4 years old and it’s hard for his family to imagine life without BABW! It’s normal for his sons to hang out with him in the engineering lab at BQ or to help him cut foam board to make mock fixtures. They love trying out new gadgets and gizmos for us! Recently, Brandon’s kids have helped with our new digital sound station for Hear Me. The digital sound station has a touchscreen that allows Guests to choose from tons of songs and sounds, including ones that have been approved by Brandon’s boys.  At Build-A-Bear Workshop, we love to hear from real kids. They help us to evolve and remain innovative.

Besides helping their dad, ALL of his kids have celebrated at least one birthday with a Build-A-Party!

Brandon E., Director Virtual World & Interactive Opbearations
Jonah, 17; Ethan, 13; Isaac, 12; Carson, 10; Kyle, 7; and Caleb, 5.


How to make ice cream: a great Father’s Day treat!

Molly Saunders, Digital Bear

One of the things I remember best about hot summers is making ice cream with my dad. We use the old wooden ice cream maker that he grew up with. It makes the best ice cream I’ve ever tasted! Nothing ever comes close to that subtle, just-sweet-enough taste, especially after you’ve worked so hard to make it.

This is our family's ice cream barrel. When you store it, the dried wood pieces kind of rattle about. When you make the ice cream they expand and the only thing holding them together are the metal rings around the bucket. They expand to fit together perfectly and don't leak when you're making the ice cream!

I’ve adapted a version of the recipe he has used for more than 40 years so that you can make ice cream with your dad, or so that your children make ice cream with their dad for Father’s Day. It could become a really wonderful tradition for your family, too. I also like that making ice cream can double Continue reading


RSVP for our reunion!

We’re all about celebrations here at Build-A-Bear Workshop. This year we’re celebrating over 100 million furry friends made and we want to reunite with all our friends! This coming weekend, May 24-27, at all our stores in the United States, Canada and the United Kingdom, we’re having a Friends Reunion. If you RSVP to the event and bring your furry friend you’ll get an exclusive Friends Count Tiny Tee for your friend. Remember to RSVP for each person you will be bringing, and don’t forget to bring your furry friend. We can’t wait to see you there!

If you’re a Fan on our Facebook page or if you follow us on Twitter, be sure to share your reunion pics with us!

RSVP to our Friends Count Reunion!


Armed Forces Day Thanks

Armed Forces Day is Saturday, May 19. To salute our troops, we asked our Facebook Fans to share photos of themselves with their heroes in uniform so we could create this album.

To all the men and women who serve and have served, and to every member of their families, thank you, from the bottom of our hearts.

Yesenia Zavala - SGT Zavala & our lil' family! from Ft. Carson, CO

Yesenia Zavala – SGT Zavala & our lil’ family! from Ft. Carson, CO

Mya Brown - Sgt. Dan Brown of WI National Guard and daughter Audrey. First day home from tour in Iraq.

Sgt. Dan Brown of WI National Guard and daughter Audrey. First day home from tour in Iraq. Photo submitted by Mya Brown.

 

Jessica Allen - My daughter wears combat boots!!! PVT. 2 Brittany Leyraud, AIT San Antonio, TX

My daughter wears combat boots!!! PVT. 2 Brittany Leyraud, AIT San Antonio, TX Photo submitted by Jessica Allen.

Jenni Dunfee - We drove all the way to Fort Drum, NY from Huntington, WV to welcome my little brother Sgt. Samuel McDowell home from Afghanistan. Her's Sam with my son Jake, who totally worships his uncle

“We drove all the way to Fort Drum, NY from Huntington, WV to welcome my “little” brother Sgt. Samuel McDowell home from Afghanistan. Her’s Sam with my son Jake, who totally worships his uncle.” Photo submitted by Jenni Dunfee.

Holly Mitchell - Sgt. Eric Mitchell, Ft. Carson, CO

Sgt. Eric Mitchell, Ft. Carson, CO Photo submitted by Holly Mitchell.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Geena Michelle Santacruz - Sarget First Class Pedro-Gonzales, Fort Leonard Wood, Missouri

Sargent First Class Pedro-Gonzales, Fort Leonard Wood, Missouri. Photo submitted by Geena Michelle Santacruz.

David Schantz - SPC Daniel Schantz and His Mom at the airport

SPC Daniel Schantz and his mom at the airport. Photo submitted by Daniel Schantz.

 

Is there someone you’d like to thank? Share it with us by commenting below.


Me and my mom

My name is Molly and I work on the Digital Team at Build-A-Bear Workshop. You’ll probably see that many stories and blog posts will be written by me. I figured some of you might eventually want to know the person writing them, so here is MY story of becoming a bear.

When I was 12 years old, I was running errands with my mom on a Saturday afternoon. We had one of those pointy-nosed mini vans with the new bucket seats in the front and I finally got to sit in one of them. At one point during our afternoon trek, my mom turned to me and said, “Guess who I met with today?” Of course, I had no idea. “Who?” I asked, wondering why it mattered, since normally her work days were not very interesting to me. “I met with an old friend of mine, we worked together a long time ago. And she wants to create a store where you get to make your own teddy bear!”

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